The general ill health of the aviation sector appears to have forced an “emergency landing” of sorts for the maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) service market for commercial aircraft.
When the aviation sector in the country was growing at over 39 per cent, eight MRO companies were keen to set up shop in the country. Now, five have already decided to defer their plans.
State-run Air India, GMR-Malaysian Air Lines, and AirWorks are the only companies that are going ahead with their plans for an MRO in the country.
“MRO’s are reworking their plans mainly because the sector is going through the worst times ever,” a sector analyst who did not wish to be identified said.
“Aircraft maintenance is an expensive affair. Maintenance, overhaul and repairs of a 50 to 60 seat could cost about $80,000 to $1,20,000 and add another $40,000 for the fuel costs if the aircraft is sent to Malaysia,” said Fredrik Groth, chief executive officer, Air Works.
“If similar checks are carried out in India, they would save 20 per cent cost and airlines can also save the fuel costs and time taken to have the aircraft repaired abroad,” Groth said.